Voluntary Police Interview Solicitors

Voluntary Police Interview Solicitors
Legally reviewed by: Laura Smith

What is a Voluntary Police Interview?

A Voluntary Police Interview can be used by the police when conducting a criminal investigation. You may be asked to attend a voluntary police interview if the police have received a complaint or an allegation against you which they believe you might be involved with.

The police might get in contact via:

  • a phone call or message
  • you might receive a card asking you to contact the police station.
  • you may even receive a knock at your door to arrange an interview.

The interview will usually be carried out in a police station. However, in some circumstances the interview will take place in your home. Wherever the interview takes place it will be carried out under caution meaning that anything you say may be used as evidence. Due to these circumstances it’s vital you speak to a solicitor. The police officers are not allowed to ask you any questions until your solicitor has arrived.

Do I Have to Attend a Voluntary Police Interview?

Although it’s called a voluntary police interview, it does not mean you should refuse to attend. Although you have a legal right to decline the interview, this may result in the police deciding to arrest you and carry out a standard police interview instead.

Voluntary police interviews are becoming increasingly common as the police must have a good reason to arrest a suspect. A voluntary police interview is also more convenient to all parties involved.

Do I Need to Have a Solicitor?

During a voluntary police interview anything you say can be used against you as evidence.

You have a legal right to use a lawyer and a legal aid solicitor will always be free. A criminal defence lawyer is an expert in the field of criminal law and can provide you with legal advice independent from the police. Furthermore, having a solicitor on your side will give you time to think and the ability for the solicitor to negotiate a beneficial outcome with the police. With a solicitor, the police are more likely to disclose the evidence they hold.

Although you have the right to speak to a solicitor and receive legal advice during an interview, in some cases the police can make you feel guilty if they insist on legal representation. In some cases, the police can make you feel like the case is more serious, or that they will have to be arrested and taken into police custody or that a solicitor will cause delays. It’s important to note that having a solicitor does not make you look guilty and only the police can delay a suspect’s release and not the solicitor.

What Happens in a Voluntary Police Interview?

At the beginning of the interview the police should inform you of:

  • The names of the officers in attendance
  • That the interview is being recorded
  • The purpose of the interview and what offence is being investigated
  • The ability to choose to end the interview at any time
  • That you have the right to not say anything
  • That anything you say can be used against you in a court of law
  • The right to legal representation

The police should formally caution the suspect that if this does not happen, then anything you say during the interview may be potentially considered inadmissible as evidence by the court.

During the interview, questions can cover the following issues:

  • Your whereabouts at certain times
  • Whether you know of certain knowledge
  • If you know about specific events.

During the interview, you have a right to breaks. This is normally fifteen-minute break every two hours.

What Happens After a Voluntary Police Interview?

All interviews will vary however, following a voluntary interview some of the following outcomes are:

  • You are free to go with no further actions required.
  • You are arrested under investigation.
  • If you are told that you will be reported for a charge to be considered against you, you may need to supply fingerprints, DNA sample and be photographed.
  • You may be requested to consent to taking part in an identification process, or voluntarily surrender items.

If you are charged with a criminal offence, you will need expert legal representation to avoid conviction or reduce potential penalties. Our team of lawyers offer private services after the police interview.

We offer a proactive private service post-police interview to handle key tasks for you. If you’re questioned but not charged, seek legal advice as you could still be arrested later. Police may not notify if they take no further action, leaving you feeling uncertain. Furthermore, a criminal defence solicitor can keep pressure on the police for a decision and keep you informed, easing worry after an interview under caution.

How to Get in Contact

Please call our defence team on 003458 941 622 or contact us online if you or a friend or family member need legal representation.

Our 24/7 police emergency advice line can be contacted 24 hours a day.

We're here for you.